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Wednesday, 28 June 2000
Page: 18477


Dr WOOLDRIDGE (Minister for Health and Aged Care) (4:46 PM) —Mr Speaker, I wish to make a personal explanation.


Mr SPEAKER —Does the honourable member claim to have been misrepresented?


Dr WOOLDRIDGE —Yes.


Mr SPEAKER —Please proceed.


Dr WOOLDRIDGE —Further to the Prime Minister's personal explanation, in the Australian today in the same article John Ellicott claimed that sources said:

Mr Howard had made the announcement without consulting Dr Wooldridge, who is forced to fund the monies for the donation from current health spending. Yesterday Dr Wooldridge was searching through his portfolio to see where he could find the money.

This is inaccurate. In fact, I undertook the negotiations personally with the new Children's Hospital and with the University of New South Wales and funds were identified last week through an underspend in the department.